Emergency management is the coordination and organization of all the relevant resources and roles for addressing all possible humanitarian aspects of natural disasters. The main objective is to minimize the destructive effects of all potential hazards, such as floods, earthquakes, landslides, hurricanes, and any other unpredictable events that can cause massive damage to a community or place. In order to ensure that disasters like these are minimized, it is important for communities to have the proper infrastructure in place, to have the services of a well-trained first responder, and to have adequate disaster kits (Disaster kits are essentially emergency kits comprised of basic essentials, such as food, water, medicines, and tools). As well, communities should have established partnerships with organizations and experts who specialize in disaster planning and response. See website for more.
A variety of professional groups are devoted to emergency management, such as the American Red Cross, the American Medical Association, the United Way, the American Society of Safety Officers, and the National Association of Firefighters. These professional organizations have developed standards, structures, and tools to guide communities in their preparations for disasters. Among the most important components of an emergency management plan is a “standup” for the community. This consists of an immediate action plan for each member of the community, including a person in charge of contacting members of the community and acting as its representative in times of crisis. Such a person should coordinate with the other members of the community and work closely with them to provide updates as they happen.
An effective emergency management system should have a number of services available to it at all times. It should offer basic services such as arranging transportation, ensuring that necessary equipment is in place, providing food and medical support, setting up hospitals and medical facilities, and coordinating emergency response to disasters. These services should be available on a 24 hour basis, every day of the week, 365 days a year, and should be able to assist in a variety of capacities, such as relief and emergency response, recovery, and restoration. For example, a fire department may offer mobile fire hose reels, training in fire extinguishing, and the placement of emergency exits.